Actually, You Don’t Have to Peel Kiwis

Actually, You Don’t Have to Peel Kiwis

There are fruits that you must peel before biting into, like pineapples, almost all citrus fruits, and bananas (especially if you have latex allergy). There are fruits that are almost never peeled, like grapes and cherries; and fruits where peeling is a sort of dealer’s choice, like apples, pears, and peaches. Until about a year ago, I had always assumed that kiwis fell into the first category, but — much like a peach — this fuzzy fruit is actually part of the third.

I forget where I first read that you “didn’t have to” peel a kiwi, but I remember my reaction: “Only a pervert would eat an unpeeled kiwi,” I thought, shaking my large, round head in disgust. But a few days later, I bought a kiwi and, that evening, got lightly drunk and ate it like an (unpeeled) apple. It did not upset me. It was like eating an unpeeled peach, but more so. The taste of the tart and sweet flesh overpowered the feel of the thin, fuzzy skin — I wouldn’t go so far to say it was “unnoticeable,” but I was certainly unbothered. (I have since eaten an unpeeled kiwi sober and had the same reaction. I don’t mind it one bit.)

I hate peeling kiwis, or any other fruit with thin, flimsy skin, so this — to me — was great news. If, however, you are the kind of person who gags at the thought of biting into an unpeeled peach, I cannot in good conscience recommend an unpeeled kiwi. As someone with textural issues of a different kind (I couldn’t eat an oyster until my late 2os), I understand that there are certain feelings some people cannot tolerate in their mouths, and I respect tht. But if you aren’t squicked out by the fuzz on a peach, you probably won’t be squicked out by the fuzz on a kiwi. Just make sure you wash it first, albeit with water only; dirty fruit is the most squicky of all.

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